Small Soldiers…

Back in 2016, during one of my slightly footloose weeks I swiped on a Soldier who seemed pretty hot. I liked his tattoos and his arms looked nice and strong… I can’t help myself when there’s biceps on show!

I met him on my lunch break, very civilised and we popped to a local Mexican restaurant and had some food and a chat. He seemed nice enough inspite of his Manchester twang… I struggle with northern accents… I have no idea why!!!?! We had a nice hour long chat about kids and family and his son, my daughter blah blah and I thought… perhaps… he was shorter than the average guy I date but he didn’t seem to have any issue with his height, that’s normally the biggest turn off, the short man syndrome, he didn’t have that! I left it at that, went back to work, after all I was supposed to be in a relationship with the Sad Mechanic but I knew I could do better, wrong I know but he was boring me and we’ll just really fucking immature sometimes!!!

Soldier boy… well not really a boy, he was 43 could be what I needed and me and the Sad Mechanic had just had the “It’s me or the dog moment” because well my dog needed a friend and I was gonna get her one and he had the nerve to give me an ultimatum!?! I went and bought another dog… message loud and clear right there!!!

Small Soldier text me the next day asking to see me again. With Sad Mechanic in a sulk I went for it, we had a date Friday Night. He picked me up from work in his BMW, took me back to mine to freshen up and out we went! First we had to drop his car at his sister’s house, turned out he was renting a room from her… okay, no real fixed abode… not the end of the world, he was sorting himself out after coming back from tour, made sense. We went for cocktails and then a Wagamama’s and it was a chilled evening, so far so good…. outside after food he finally plucked up the courage to grab a kiss and it went from there back to mine… I don’t think either of us we’re looking for a relationship, but a night of fun was good. Well I dunno what the guy had been eating that week but well I regretted swallowing… to be fair though he was pretty good in bed. We kinda fell asleep and I guessed he was staying. 4am came and he gets up in a panic, I feel really ill! Good old Wagamama’s gets everyone at some point so he called a taxi and that’s the last I saw of him. He had talked about going to start a diving business, I kind of hope he did. Perhaps that’s why he ran off never to be heard from again… not that I minded, it was never going to be any more than a one night stand…

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The problem with clever girls…

Dating when you’re clever and not afraid to be clever is a struggle. Here’s what I’ve learnt so far…

You need someone you can actually have a level conversation with – a bitch and a moan is great every now and again but for me I want to be able to talk about fun stuff with someone and learn something in the process. I see a relationship as a partnership where you constantly learn from one another. When that stops, I struggle. I need to be able to make a clever joke and someone actually get it or someone to keep my brain alive with clever jokes so I don’t die of boredom. There’s a balance. If someone gives me the need to google something to keep up! Even better! I’m not afraid of not knowing something.

Lots of clever men are very insecure – I tend to find the more intelligent the guy is, the more he’s threatened by your intellect. He’ll do that in different ways. Either he’ll spend his time making out you’re stupid, some guys are very good at this, if I get promoted it was apparently down to him, if I pass an exam he would have scored higher, if I took up a new hobby it was lame and a waste of time. It’s totally demoralising and makes you give up a lot of the things you love doing, that in turn makes him feel better because he wants me to be average. It was only when I stand up for what I believed in that the bigger issues in these types of relationship began. Others will do it by patronising you. Dr Yesterday at one point said “Gosh, you’re so clever doing all that computery stuff, much cleverer than I and I’m a Doctor.” Like being a doctor gives you the key to being ultimately more intelligent than anyone else on the planet, it doesn’t, there are plenty of physicists, philosophers, writers, and average people with the ability to think that can beat anyone with the title Doctor any day!!! The clincher “what a Darhling little data modeller you are!”…. errr oh well thanks and fuck off!

Normal guys don’t think they’re good enough – just don’t mention your I.Q.!!!! They run! Run a mile! You probably didn’t mention your I.Q. at all but you compared your GCSE maths grades, or you worked out the tip for the bill in your head on the spot or something like that and he thought “good god! I can’t keep up.” So he ran a mile….yep! Yes I get frustrated if someone doesn’t know the basics of maths, but I don’t want to talk maths all day!!! Why can’t they just be happy that I can add up good and he’s probably better at something else like cooking, seriously I’d kill for a guy that would do my ironing!!! ūüėČ on a serious note though someone to help me lift stuff when I’m fixing my house would really help… haven’t got time for insecure guys who get all shitty because their maths is bad!

You earn more – for some reason no matter what has happened in the world to push equality you earning more than your guy seems to cause a problem and I have no idea why!?! Well I do, it’s the age old protector in them rearing its ugly head. I don’t see why we can’t just celebrate that sometimes she earns more, if you both like what you do and work hard then where’s the issue? I’ve been in positions before where the guy had no desire to work and you seemed to always pay, that’s different. I’m talking about the guy that has an honest job, just the way society ranks the job means there’s less pay coming in. It’s not their fault and why should it be an issue? I don’t understand why these guys would rather have a girl on less pay, or very often get taken advantage of by some gold digger (this happens a lot because this guy just wants to look after someone) than swallow his pride and share being happy with someone who can accept him for who he is. If anything it’s less pressure on him, yet somehow they never quite see it that way!

He wants the life you can offer and not you – hmmmm been there way too often. Skater boy changed every bit of me, took credit for every good thing I did and gave not very much in return. Yes he worked hard too, but not without rubbing my face in it that he was doing it all for me! That in my eyes isn’t giving, that’s martyrdom for attention. When I was the sole wage earner, pregnant working 50+ hours a week, I was so useless with money that I had to get paid into his bank account so he could control the money… funny how he always had new clothes, that student loan he got for not turning up to uni never seemed to go far, but when I needed Maternity clothes they were far too expensive. I recognised this in the ‘Stand in’ too, when he started to ask how much equity I had in my house, what my Job’s market value was, then started sending Zoopla pages with the tag, we could pool our resources and buy this after 2 months… that was a big flat no! I will share with anyone I am dating, but when they expect me to buy them a better life, nope nope nope! When you start to feel like a meal ticket to some guys middle class aspirations it’s time to run!

I don’t need rescuing – I sometimes joke with ‘the one’ that I need him to come and rescue me and we’ll make up a tone of scenarios where he’s going to scale the building mission impossible style with a husky drawn chariot because huskies are cool. But this guy knows that I don’t need recusing at all, he’s just helping me exercise my imagination. He knows full well I can stand on my own two feet and there’s rarely a time when I haven’t “got this shit handled” he stands back and applauds when I handled it. Most guys… any possible opportunity for them to come swooping in where they’re not wanted and there they are!!! Getting in the way meaning I’ve got to waste energy now handling their shit instead. It was interesting recently, my daughter ended up in hospital because of her diabetes and it was a worrying time. Whilst I stood next to my daughter’s bed giving her my full attention could Skater Boy do the same? No, Skater Boy spent more time building his own pity party and milking the attention whilst his Sloth drove him back and forth and felt all sorry for him. I was glad not to be with him any more, I realised how much energy I had wasted in the past focussing on him when I should have purely focussed on my child. On the other hand had I still been with ‘The Stand in’ well sure he would have come to recuse me as would have Dr Yesterday but we would have certainly heard all about it and how I couldn’t have copedwithout them…. WRONG! Instead ‘The one’ stayed well away, reminded me to eat, sent us video clips to laugh at whilst she was recovering and checked in when I wasn’t busy just to say hi. He knew there was nothing he could add to the situation by being there, so he saved up hugs for when I’d actually have time to get them.

Hilariously Mr Married often asks why I don’t have a ring on my finger… answer, because I’m too fucking scary! The guys that would ask don’t deserve me and the ones that might just get a yes respect me to much to assume so don’t ask!

And there it is… perhaps I might just die alone surrounded by rescue dogs… lol!

Dr Yesterday

Dr Yesterday was my boyfriend for a brief period just before My ex. He was the one who’d left me heart broken and insecure at the age of 21 giving probably any guy who tried his way in. Sometimes when me and my ex argued I’d wonder what could have been. It was one of those whirl wind things, I’d been swept off my feet by this student doctor who seemed to have it all together and then just like that it ended. No explaining, no reasons, nothing.

My ex knew him, we all worked behind the bar in a pub to pay our rent. He hated him, had a million reasons to hate the tall, student doctor who had a clear route into the army straight after uni, he was already an army officer.

Years went past, My ex and I split and a Facebook invite appeared from Dr Yesterday. So I accepted. Nothing much else happened, the odd message. He was up in mid Wales living on his small holding, retired from the army, working one day a week as a locum GP. On paper he was perfect but something didn’t feel quite right.

We met up in March after I’d split from the one. We started talking and he was telling me all about how great his life was. It went from a nice chat to, “Oh God I’ve missed you”, then “You can still have more children can’t you?”.

The date ended with a goodnight kiss and I decided the myth of Dr Yesterday was over. I had closure on him, he wasn’t the man I’d loved back then. Then the messages… “I miss you, I want to be back with you…” the guilt again. I replied coldly and they just got worse. The crux of them being, “You don’t need your career now, you and your daughter can move to Mid Wales and live with me, I’ll buy you both a horse and you don’t have to work any more.” Another guy who just didn’t get me. I like my career, it’s tricky sometimes but it’s mine. I like my house, it’s not perfect but it’s mine. When I get my own horse I will have earned it.

He wanted to meet me half way, told me he’d wine and dine me, the usual. It just wasn’t what I wanted. This guy on paper was perfect but I knew if I was with him I’d have to become someone I’m not. I could hardly share the things I love doing with this guy, he was not a metal head like me and he may have a motorbike but his was boring and middle aged. He was after a wife, an oven for his kids and it didn’t matter who. I would not have been happy with this guy, I would have just become another of his many possessions and I wasn’t interested.

So I said goodbye to the ghost of Dr Yesterday, at least I had closure. The wondering what might have been ended. It turns out even though I’d not been the happiest with Skater Boy all the time I may have been just as unhappy with Dr Yesterday if not more so and I wouldn’t be the girl I am today. So here’s to being independent and free! I’d rather be myself and struggling than having to act to earn my dinner…

 

My birthday treat?!?

It was my birthday and I was still dating the Stand In. I don’t really like making a fuss of my birthday, it’s been a bit of a shit occasion for easily the last 17 years so I hadn’t really seen the point. He’d asked me to be free for the weekend and drive to his, 50 miles away and he would treat me for the weekend. I was pretty excited as this felt new. So Friday after work I packed up the car with my dogs and drive over.

I got there and he’d cooked which was sweet and told me we were going to The countryside for Saturday, we could walk the dogs and his mother lived there. Sounded okay….

He wakes me up early, like stupid o’clock on my birthday and hurries me up. We get in my car… my car is bigger and I had to drive ON MY BIRTHDAY to his mother’s. Basically he had major guilt about not seeing his mother enough and took the opportunity for me to drive him there and kill two birds with one stone!!!! To be fair she was incredibly sweet and it was lovely to meet her, the resemblance was uncanny!

The drive there was stressful, my car played up a bit and he was more worried we’d be late than the fact I had freed myself up for my birthday weekend and we were going to see his mother!?!

I smiled the whole day but to be honest was wishing I was with ‘the one’. There were a lot of Facebook well wishes and that really made me happy, but nothing from the one I really wanted. We were at a local pub, food was mediocre to be honest but I had a nice chat with his mum and the day was pleasant.

Just after eating my messages pinged, it was a really sweet message from ‘the one’ just hoping I was good and having a nice day. This made my day and really set me thinking.

So we dropped his mum home and drove back to his. On the way he told me he had a surprise so we stopped in Narberth. Me wondering what it was. He wanted to take me in a deli to buy what he saw as really good food. And wanted to buy me a Paella pan, this just really showed how little he really knew me. This wasn’t my idea of fun, it was his. Trying not to sound ungrateful here, I sound a right bitch. But I like listening to metal, riding horses, motorbikes, paintball and anything that involves opening up my inner child. This felt like I was preparing for death and a night in with my slippers… which is pretty much what happened for my birthday night; a bottle of over priced wine (I hate wine), smelly cheese and a film I don’t even remember because it was that dull, using my Netflix account and my chrome cast!!!

With my dogs locked in the kitchen because they scared his cats, and a real lack lustre night in his cold house that stank of cat pee I felt dismal. I had a message off Mr Married also wishing me a happy birthday and he hoped this one was spoiling me. So I lied that he was…

I never expect birthday presents, haven’t had them really in years, so had said please don’t worry. I was on higher pay as he quite often observed and him spending money on me made me feel guilty. He made a big fuss that he’d spent a fortune on stuff I wanted but couldn’t have it till I was at mine and my daughter was with us.

Back at mine a few days after with my daughter back from her dad’s he decided we could celebrate my birthday. He’d bought a nice cake and made a massive fuss over presents. I really wished he hadn’t, he gave me a bracket that I would just never wear, I don’t wear jewellery and new bike gloves, nice gesture but I already had a really good triumph pair and these were too big. I looked happy feeling sad inside, I felt so guilty for not liking the presents, they were just totally not me and really showed he just had no idea about who I really was. I wore the bracelet to show him he hadn’t wasted his money, he made a massive fuss that it cost him a bomb and this made me feel worse.

What was wrong with me hey? Lots of girls would love this?!? Trouble is I’m just not lots of girls, the generic offereings, the generic day, generic food, wine blah blah just were a reflection of him not me. He was trying to mould me into his middle class ideal and kept jokingly referring to me as his wife which made me shudder. This wasn’t working, 2 months in it was not going to work but the guilt, he was good at that, it would take me a while to get past the fear of disappointing him…. to be continued…

The Stand In

So back in the Summer of 2016 I met the Stand In. I was and still am in love with ‘The One’ that never went away, but thinking he was gone forever I thought well at least this guy seems nice. I met him at work, I had a raging hangover and it was a Friday, he had booked a meeting with me on a Friday afternoon of all times and I was furious, nobody does that!!!

So I go into the meeting grumpy and hungover. He was actually pretty nice, I was very honest that I didn’t want to be there and we just ended up talking. He had totally grey hair, but turned out he was my age. And I thought, well as he works in the office 50 miles away I was unlikely to see him again and so I kinda forgot.

The next week it was department drinks and he was there. We got chatting and he seemed nice and one thing led to another and I thought “well why not?” We went back to mine and had very drunken sex. The next morning he was up at the crack of dawn which was just weird and went home. I carried on thinking “Well bye, that was fun I guess” but really didn’t want anything else. That’s where the guilt later came. He asked to meet in the week, we did and he pursuaded me we should have a relationship…. his exact words. So worn down I agreed. This was the start of the really really nice guy who was actually very controlling. Initially he had little idiosyncrasies that reminded me of the one, and I thought perhaps I’d met an older version of him. It was so strange, for the first month there were so many similarities, love of martial arts, he kept fit and healthy and words that he said that I was fooled. Then the Muppets obsession started to surface. This guy thought the muppets was the best thing ever. Worst still he kept pulling weird faces and making noises like a muppet, this irritated me more and more each time to the point I wanted to punch him!!! He stopped being the older version of the one and started being controlling in a way that was totally different to control I’d experienced in the past, more sneaky, caring, making me eat, deciding on holidays I didn’t want.

He would often slag my daughter’s dad off and this really used to piss me off! How dare he comment! He was a guest in our house and he was abusing his status. But this negativity was actually him showing his insecurities. He so desperately wanted to stand in as my daughter’s dad that he even started commenting on my parenting choices. He had to go!!!!

Also sex after a couple of weeks just got boring, it was like he had a routine, he was so predictable, nothing like the one. I was bored. He wasn’t going to last… to be Continued…

And then you go and spoil it all by saying something stupid like vote Brexit…

The conversation that confirmed it was never going to work…

I was still seeing the Sad Mechanic, and was over him before it had really started but couldn’t seem to shake him off. There were moments where he could be sweet, he talked about loving me, and yet it was so empty, I don’t think I really had feelings for him. Looking back a long way on I realise now he was so similar to my daughters dad. He played the mind games that I’d become accustomed to, going silent and ignoring me till I begged to know what I’d done to upset him. I never did find out. Accusations of seeing other people, all the time. And the constant comments about my house being unclean, my clothes too scruffy, the things that made me feel like crap but also made me militant in my need to stand up for myself. Not that I really did. I reverted to type, it was going to take a bit more therapy to realise his behaviour was wrong and be able to stand up and walk away properly. These guys get you with guilt. They don’t believe deep down they are worthy of you (they’re not) so to bring you down to their level they chip away at you, gaslighting, starting arguments, then showing you off to their friends as long as you behave as they had trained you to… so you start to believe you were always in the wrong. Really you just fell for more tricks. This guy was constantly moaning that he was a failure, in fact I actually think he was. Here was a guy with everything, parents to bail him out, living at their farm, eating whatever they bought, never having really looked after himself. But his failure was actually his own making, he was so arrogant, always right. I remember the day he went nuts in front of everyone because his sister had used his boots to go feed her horse. It was totally disproportionate and I felt awkward and left pretty quick.

The conversation that ended it, with The in/out vote looming and this guy so pompous in how right he was about everything started talking about how Maggie Thatcher was the best Priminister ever and the Tories were the best thing to happen to the UK. It put me on edge, I’d grown up in the 80’s with my parents working hard but struggling, my dad a teacher and my whole family from industrial backgrounds, Tories for me were just unacceptable, there was no way I could ever vote Tory. And so he started to talk about voting out of Europe, that it was the only way. I disagreed and put across my points. He gave me a lecture about how little I knew and actually said that women like me were so jaded, we shouldn’t be allowed to vote. The conversation made me realise that if I stuck with this guy, I’d be as unhappy as I had been before. He was just a younger version of my daughter’s dad. Who incidentally had also been very into politics and incredibly forceful in his views. The Brexit conversation ended it for me there and then, like a wake up call. It would take me a further 2 weeks to actually pluck up the courage to end it, and he didn’t take it well. But getting that one out of my life was a relief he was not the guy he sold himself as, he was looking for someone to validate his bad behaviour and treat him like a god. I’m not into monotheistic religion luckily so saw that shit coming and did what I should have the first time he went cold on me and cut him out for good.

Open Letter to The One

The one…

It’s amazing how a quick swipe right can change your life to the point that¬†you can’t remember the life before. I didn’t think you’d turn up, our first date was impulsive, last minute with a sense of urgency, something told me I had to meet you and couldn’t wait around for getting to know you online. I don’t know why. I’d used that app¬†two weeks before, lost and lonely and I know we matched then too, but I was too scared of my future that that point and deleted my profile without a second thought. It didn’t dawn on me that we’d matched before when we matched for real that first time.

You were late, I was early, it was late, I had never done this before, you were my first real date. As we talked and discovered we were two people identical in so many ways I worried about the complications that my former life brought and if you would stay or run.

The feelings, they happened so quick, I didn’t have time to understand and then life got complicated and you got distant and so we split. I was too insecure, I needed help and so I got help. Each day thinking you were gone from my life I missed you, your place in my heart was there forever and I¬†couldn’t erase you, I tried but I couldn’t. As my friends said you were silly and I laughed and said you were not for me “onwards and upwards”, made excuses for why it was never going to happen, inside I disagreed, my friends knew this too, I can never hide my emotions.

So I dated, carried on, met people who just weren’t you, hurt each time because it felt like I was cheating somehow I guess the heart never lies no matter how hard you try to¬†lie to yourself, logic for the logical girl like me couldn’t undo the feelings, feelings just aren’t logic. When you invited me over that first time, a month after we split, on my way home from work, I had changed, was more relaxed, I told you I was good. I went to show myself that I only missed you because I wanted what I couldn’t have and when I saw you it would be different. I had a boyfriend, this would be¬†closure. But it wasn’t, we spoke, we kissed we… but¬†I was to leave and not see you for a while, although my messages probably pleading that we try¬†probably pushed you away further.

We both said we had no one special that¬†day, you laughed I’d tried dating again, you didn’t seem jealous, were you? I¬†was. But then I think, the “no-one special” in my life that day, was¬†he the same as the “no-one special” in your life too? Just a gap¬†filler to mask the pain of never having you in my life again and the dreams so vivid that were lost replaced with dreams of grey, except for the ones with you¬†that came in my slumber when I needed you most. when I told you I missed the dreams we had that others would think were silly but meant so much to me of rescuing sloths, owning a zoo and travelling the world and you told me I was free to make new, better dreams with someone who could look after me, I screamed inside because you just couldn’t see that I didn’t want any dreams if they weren’t with you. Even in the dreams of my own accomplishments you would be there in my life in spirit.

Each time I saw you in the time in between it felt like it was right, it didn’t feel like cheating, I couldn’t settle for anyone else, I didn’t want anyone else, everyone else felt like cheating on you. And then you came back, me in a relationship that was not going to happen, with the cheap replacement that had at first seemed like an older version of you, a person I should be with, everyone told me so for the sake of my family life, the “Step-in-dad” that would fill the gaps for my child. They were wrong, that’s not what we needed. And I ended it to be with you because you were what I wanted. With my child’s encouragement because she knows that I am happy when you are in my life.

As we lay in my bed and I held you through your pain and you opened up to me about life in ways you had kept secret from me before, I felt so honoured that you had been able to share with me the things that were going through your head. I only hoped my reassurance helped, that you would see the man I see when I look at you because that man is wonderful in every single way.

In my distressing months with my career feeling so much in limbo you helped me hold it together, mostly from afar but that’s what I needed. You were my rock even though you have absolutely no idea because you still don’t believe in the man that I see. As we cried on the plane, holding hands because you had¬†set me free on our last day in Rome I couldn’t hate you because I knew that your reasons were unselfish and you cared, but didn’t believe in the man that I see. I loved you more, your actions showed me that you were so far from the narcissistic man you joked that you were, your self deprecating image of yourself that was so far from the truth if you could only just see. That kiss in the car outside your place, that I thought would be our very last, I told myself would be our very last kiss, I didn’t want to believe would be our very last kiss. I felt the pain in you as you told yourself you were doing the right thing. You had said if your life was not such a mess you would be with me forever and it was your fault not mine, I hated that you felt that way about yourself, if you could only see what I saw instead.

The two weeks without you, thinking you were really gone, I read tarot after tarot that told me you were not, but had been¬†disappointed before and so in despair I resigned myself to no more love. I just couldn’t do it, I wanted it but only with you, the physical distractions that I had taken solace in the last time didn’t interest me and the idea of anyone else distressed me further, so I hoped and asked the universe to help me find my¬†way and it led me back to you.

So here we are again, I have thrown away ideas of make or break, I realise now it’s not logical and logic won’t solve the mysteries of intuition. The lifescape ahead will get rough sometimes but¬†if there is any certainty in my life¬†that certainty¬†is you. I don’t know if we’ll ever be together in the way that others are, but I’m okay with that because what I have with you is what I need. I never dared to believe in soul mates before because the disappointment in spending my life without ever meeting mine in the life I had before you was too painful to acknowledge. Now that we have, it feels like there was never a time when we weren’t together somehow, it’s just that we¬†hadn’t found each other till the fateful day that we both swiped right.

When I take away the worry of losing you again I feel free because I know that no matter what happens, the universe will always lead me straight back to you.

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